Just One Smoker's Opinion

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Editor:

I am a smoker. Yes, I know it is bad for your health, makes your clothes smell, stains your fingers and generally makes you a leper in today's society.

Banishing me and others who smoke to outside areas or in our own homes won't make smokers quit. Maybe, just maybe, we are putting our priorities in the wrong place and worrying about things that have less importance than the real subjects we should be worrying about.

Please ponder these few questions:

How many smokers a year have killed or maimed a person or a family on the highways because they have had that one too many cigarettes?

How many man hours a year have been missed or lost because of smoking versus hangovers?

How many wives or kids have been abused because of having that one too many cigarettes?

How many violent crimes in general have been committed because of ingesting too many cigarettes or secondhand smoke from a smoker?

Yes, smoking is bad, but in more cases than not, a smoker hurts himself far more than anyone else and trying to force a smoker to quit by ostracizing them from society won't work. Like any other addiction in society, the addicted has to make a resolution to themselves to quit or it won't work.

I suggest that we have, as a society, much more important things to worry about than whether an individual voluntarily chooses to affect his health with another Marlboro. We should be putting more precedence on subjects like teenage pregnancy, drug use in our community, physical and sexual abuse in our families and drinking and driving. These are subjects that are far more important to me.

Steve Colbert, Payson

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